Menswear: Tweak Team
I bet half of you clicked this because you thought it read “Twerk Team”. It’s fine. I won’t tell anyone. The Tweak Team is slightly different. Instead of working our posterior muscles, we’ll be flexing our sartorial muscles. (Trust me, it’s just as eye-catching.) All you have to do to be a member of the squad is to take what you would normally wear and tweak it a bit to transform the outfit. Let’s focus on the little details of clothing because they really add up. You have to pay attention in order to grab attention. I’ll show you what I mean:
No better way to start than with this classic outfit: plain white tee and jeans. Here’s how I tweaked it:
1) Roll up. I like to roll up my sleeves when wearing tee shirts. It gives an edgy look and makes your arms look bigger. (I need all the help I can get.)
2) Be square. Throwing a pocket square into a shirt pocket instantly adds class and color. I make all of mine myself by cutting up old clothes. Get creative.
3) What the cuff? Cuffing your jeans can put a twist on an outfit in multiple ways. Not only does it create a layer of contrast and texture, but it also helps show off your kicks. I chose to go sockless with this look for a more laidback feel. It’s sexy when girls show skin, so why shouldn’t we?
4) Lace up. This simple outfit can definitely get boring, so I added some swank by changing up the laces of the oxfords for a pop of color. I think the shoes are a perfect hybrid of casual, yet refined.
So that’s how I infused my personality into a timeless look. This could be every dude’s go-to outfit for just chilling out—easy and cool. And if you get lazy like I do, throw on a hat so you don’t have to worry about your hair.
Since we can’t always rock a tee-shirt and jeans, here’s my next tweaked outfit, one I think is great for going out with friends and family.
1) Top notch. Buttoning a shirt all the way up can give a fresh, polished feel. (Heads up: I’ll admit, some of my friends tease me for doing this, but I disregard it. All that matters is that you like it. When you feel good, you look good, and you do good.)
2) Stacked. Doubling (even tripling) up on wristwear is a rising trend in men’s fashion. I like to go with a watch/bracelet pairing for a little variety. Keep in mind that accessories aren’t just for girls. Bracelets are a simple, cheap way to up your game.
3) Man up. A lot of guys are afraid of wearing color in fear that it might come across as too feminine or flamboyant. I think it’s the opposite. Real men aren’t scared to try something new and take risks. With this look, I chose neutral colors for the shirt, jacket, and shoes, and let the pants do the talking. The burgundy is not too loud, but still makes a statement.
So try this next time you’re heading out. It’ll expand your wardrobe and add a little flair.
Outfit #3 is my favorite by a long shot. It’s the perfect way to incorporate many items of your wardrobe all at once. This allows for you to explore a lot of details and combinations. Try some of these tweaks to battle the cold without sacrificing style.
1) Shrek. A great philosopher of our generation, he once compared himself to an onion with layers. Let’s adhere to this wisdom. Do away with oversized, puffy jackets. They can immobilize you and give off a Michelin Man effect. Instead, opt for multiple, thin pieces. Here, I chose to wear a hoodie, denim jacket, and peacoat, without managing to look too bulky. To accentuate the layers even more, I cuffed the peacoat’s sleeves to show off the blue underneath, as well as the wristwear.
2) Lose yourself. The rise of brands like Beats by Dr. Dre and Soul by Ludacris have added a new category of head gear to our arsenal. Don’t forget that headphones are a part of an outfit, too. They’re like sexy earmuffs that let you escape from the world (and tune out those annoying freshman on the bus—sorry if you’re one of them). So pump up the volume and look cool while doing so.
3) Pinup. With this look, I decided to pin-roll my jeans for a more tapered effect. To get this streamlined silhouette, I folded an inch or two of each pant leg over and rolled them up a few times to keep the fold tight and tucked in. This is a great trick for revamping your wardrobe since it’s a simple way to add a modern twist to those old, baggy jeans.
4) Sock ‘em. Socks are the most fun fashion genre. You can pick from all sorts of colors and designs and chose how much is on display. They can be a subtle addition to bring an outfit together or, they can be used for some jazz and don’t have to match with the getup at all.
5) Back it up. Don’t forget what’s behind you. A backpack or messenger bag can be functional and stylish. I’m sporting a bright red backpack to add life to the outfit. It also matches the socks and red stripe of the bracelet for some cohesiveness.
Now the fall and winter don’t have to be so brutal. It’ll give us a chance to employ more of our closet and experiment with the endless possibilities that layering has to offer.
There you have it. The Tweak Team Tutorial is complete. It’s a no-cut team, so walk on and try some of these tips out for yourself. Remember, it’s not necessarily about what you wear—it’s about how you wear it. Putting a little thought into an outfit is a lot easier than you think, and the payoff is huge. Everyone will dig the effort and appreciate that you at least tried to improve the way you present yourself. Welcome to the team, bro!
Stay swanky. Stay savvy.
P.S. Thank you to my friend, Stephanie Wang, for the awesome photos and making me look more handsome than I really am.
Check out her work here and please “Like” and follow!